Home > Her Dirty Bodyguards (Men at Work #4)

Her Dirty Bodyguards (Men at Work #4)
Author: Mika Lane




Lillian ‘Lill’ Harlowe



“You come very highly recommended.”

I smiled humbly.

“Tell me, have you cleaned for many other families?”

“Oh yes. So many,” I lied enthusiastically.

Was she kidding? I didn’t even clean my own apartment. And it wasn’t a fraction of the size of this sprawling Upper East Side two-story apartment I was standing in.

You know how rare two-story apartments are in Manhattan? my BFF Beebie had asked when trying to sell me on the cleaning job.

No, I didn’t know. And I didn’t care. I wouldn’t have wanted to clean someone’s home if it were painted in fucking gold.

Which Amalia von Malsen’s home very well could be. I hadn’t gotten past the foyer yet.

“Ah, here he is,” my new employer said, her polite, nice-to-meet-you smile morphing into something different as she tilted her head demurely and bit her lower lip.

I looked up to find a tall man, gorgeous, of course, because what else would they have in this home, heading toward me, his dress shoes clicking on the marble floor and his sport jacket flying behind him.

Had god ever made a better-looking couple?

She looked up at him adoringly as he approached.

“Apologies for being late, ma’am,” he said to her.

Was that how he talked to his wife?


And what was that lump under the right side of his jacket? People didn’t carry pagers anymore did they?

Unless he was a drug dealer?

“Lillian, this is our head of family security, Callum Deverall,” she purred as if she’d designed the man herself.

Oh. Not a husband. A worker bee.

Like me.

And um, that pager? Probably a gun.

“Hello, Lillian,” he said, looking me up and down with his impossibly chiseled jawline.

As he sized me up, I was wishing I’d worn something nicer than my H&M skinny jeans and Converse Chucks. By contrast, Amalia looked like she’d floated out of the pages of Harper’s Bazaar. But I guess that’s how you dressed when you didn’t have to clean your own home.

He took another step closer to me. “I hope you don’t mind, but we need to pat you down before you can enter the von Malsen home any further.”

Nobody told me about this part.

I tried to casually laugh, but it came out more like a choking sound. “You’re not serious, are you?”

Amalia’s smiled faltered, her face growing dark. But only for a moment. She was clearly practiced at ‘looking pleasant.’ “Lillian, we are serious. Everyone new to our staff undergoes a background check and gets patted down for weapons and god knows what else” —she gazed up at Mister Security again— “the first time they arrive for work, and then randomly afterward.”

Jesus. What had I wandered into? I knew from Beebie, who’d decorated their apartment, that Amalia’s husband, the esteemed Eckhart von Malsen, was some kind of important United Nations diplomat. But was patting down the cleaning lady really necessary?

I decided not to make a joke about it being a good thing I’d left my own gun at home.

But Mister Security was freaking hot, and I hadn’t been touched by a man in a while. So I caved.

I smiled to show what a pleasant person I was. “Okay. Um, do we go into another room or something?” I asked, looking between the two of them.

Would he ask me to take my clothes off? That might not be so bad…

Amalia looked at me with scorn. “No, dear. Just put your hands up on the wall right there, and let Cal do his job. And mind the wallpaper.”

Holy crap. Just like in the movies.

“I’m not really comfortable with this, Mrs. von Malsen—”

“No,” she cried, “please call me Amalia.”

Not the point, but okay.


She pressed her lips together and sniffed, clearly not used to being questioned. “Lillian, please let Cal do his job so we can all go on about our day.”

I looked at Mister Security, hoping for some solidarity. We were both just staff bitches. But the expression on his face didn’t indicate he felt the same way.

He gestured toward the wall with his chin, his lips pressed together sternly.

Holy shit. What an ass.

So I turned around and slapped my hands on Amalia’s wallpaper, stepping my feet apart, just like they did on TV. And as he moved closer, I bent and pushed my ass out, hoping to ‘innocently’ graze him.

But he was too fast for me.

He smoothed his hands over my hair, then my shoulders and down my back. He ran his hands over each of my arms and then my legs, squeezing lightly, then around my abdomen and just up to my underwire bra.

Guess they don’t feel the boobs.

His hands skimmed my butt cheeks, and then he stopped.

“Is that it?” I asked, trying to see him over my shoulder.

“Yes,” he said. “Thank you.”

Well. That was kind of lame, as pat-downs go.

Regaining my dignity, I whipped around, I guess a little too fast for Security, because I found my nose inches from his chest.

“Oh. Excuse me,” I said, stepping to the side.

Security nodded at Amalia, then click-clicked down the hall to wherever he’d come from.

“Thanks, Cal,” Amalia called after him in a dreamy voice.

He turned and nodded. “You’re welcome, ma’am.”

Suck up.

The smile on her face faded as she turned to me. “Let’s go to the kitchen.”

Welcome to the von Malsens’.

We passed through a sprawling living room with multiple seating areas reminiscent of a hotel lobby and lots of cool, oversized paintings on the walls.

Damn. Beebie had done an amazing job putting this place together. Guess that’s why she was one of New York’s top decorators.

“Your home is lovely, Amalia.”

She stopped so abruptly I almost plowed into her. “It’s the view that sold us,” she announced, gesturing toward French doors that opened onto a terrace, and city skyline beyond.

I could see why.

New York was a crazy place to be with its endless noise, smells, and throngs of different sorts of humanity. But a sanctuary like this would make for a whole different experience, especially compared to what I was used to. My apartment building had a permanent slight garbage-y smell, which no amount of Lysol could cover up. The hallways were strewn like a minefield with bicycles and baby carriages people couldn't fit into their tiny apartments. And our views looked straight into the apartments across the alley, including that of one chubby guy who liked to clean naked.

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